Steven Wilson & band, Sentrum Scene, Oslo, Norway, March 18, 2013

I arrived at about 9 PM and discovered to my surprise that the venue was seated. Yet not so strange I guess, with Sentrum originally being a movie theatre in the 80s. I have seen everyone there from Motörhead, Cathedral, Faith No More, Monster Magnet and many other acts and there had not been seats present. Anyway, as I arrived, ghostly synth sounds set on loop accompanied by a light projection of the moon on the latest CD The Raven That Refused To Sing And Other Stories went on for about 20 minutes until the band arrived on stage. They kicked right into Luminol, the opener off the latest album. The place was nearly packed with people who all seemed familiar with the material. Then there was Drive Home, a lengthy piece which I enjoyed as well. When the band were about to play Postcard, from the Grace For Drowning album, Wilson sat down by his keyboard and explained it was his attempt at writing a 3 minute pop song, with some success. The Holy Drinker was on next if I am not mistaken. Before the band started on The Watchmaker we were treated to a nightmarish psychedelic film featuring the characters from that song. I believe Lasse Hoilie is responsible for this as well. The song started when the film clip ended. An hour and a half into the show had gone and I needed to catch the last bus home as I live an hour long bus ride outside Oslo. It was an immensely enjoyable show, with a full band, both Wilson on guitar and keyboards, another keyboard player, Theo Travis on flute and saxophones, another guitar player and a chick on bass as well as a drummer who looked a lot like Christian Vander. I wish I had stayed another hour to see the whole performance, but that would have meant waiting for the 12:30 bus for an hour outside. Wilson at the start of the show promised the band would play the entire new album through, so I guess in addition to some added older material I missed about half the show. Catch them on tour if you can.

Reviewed by Christian Eric Mumford

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